Man has been shaving and using blades for 5,000 years. Gilette, Wilkinson and other providers of blades of all calibers and models occupy this juicy market. Not for much longer. Indeed, an American startup announces having invented the laser razor, without water, without foam, without refill, without blades. Clean, neat, healthy, durable. In short, a revolution in bathrooms. The beard, tamed by the laser, is entering the 21st century with great fanfare!
Ahe first aspect of the Skarp Laser Razor is far from being disturbing. It looks like a razor like any other razor, like those thousands of razors that one keeps preciously or throws away compulsively. And yet, it's a revolutionary object: it's the world's first laser razor. A razor without a blade, operating thanks to a high-precision, low-energy laser beam. No risk of burning or cutting, because this razor is smart.
Its two inventors, Morgan Gustavsson and Paul Binun are presented as laser specialists. They previously invented "intense light", one of the most widespread uses of which is to treat pigmentation spots on the skin. During their researchthey claim to have spotted a chromophore, a pigment molecule, in the hair. This molecule is common to all humans, regardless of sex, age or skin colour. This chromophore reacts to light wavelengths. Therefore, by simply adjusting the laser to this wavelength, you can shave any hair neatly and instantly.
The laser razor is designed by the California startup Skarp Technologies and it would have many advantages. The inventors say: " The wavelength we use does not emit UV. The power of the laser is too low to cause damage. But more importantly, the laser does not penetrate the skin, it only penetrates the hair. Therefore, there is absolutely no risk of developing complications or injury. ». Another advantage is that this laser razor is waterproof and can be used in the shower, although it does not require water to shave properly. It is battery powered and the laser would have a life span of 55,000 hours, which is much longer than an LED light bulb.
You can imagine the savings made on non-recyclable blades, foams, disposable razors...
This innovation, if it comes to fruition, will make the shaving industry's hair stand on end. Their gigantic business would be seriously threatened. Yet they are marketing aces, business school role models. They invented two-blade, three-blade... up to six-blade razors. They built a market erecting incompatibility as a system: impossible to use blades of one brand with a razor of another brand. They know how to play on packaging and communication to attract buyers from competitors and get their own customers to adopt more expensive models.
And yet, with this disruptive innovation hitting the market, the giants are starting to worry seriously.
It's a good thing, because from the very first presentations of the Spark laser razor, the success was immediate, almost mind-boggling. The startup wanted to use the crowdfunding platform as a platform to raise Kickstarter a few thousand dollars to finalize his prototype. Within days the meter exploded to over $4 million. This manna, suspended by the crowdfunding platform upon delivery of a working prototype, would allow the inventors to accelerate their industrial development. In the meantime, they seem to be starting to successfully sell their product on the internet with a subscription site and promise, despite the many criticisms they have received about the robustness of their technology, to consider commercializing their product as early as next March.